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Export Controls Guidance


Commitment to Export Controls Compliance

It is the policy of Villanova University (VU) to comply with United States export control laws and regulations including, without limitation, those implemented by the Department of Commerce through its Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and the Department of State through its International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), as well as those overseen by the Treasury Department through its Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).

Villanova strives to maintain a community in which faculty, staff, researchers and students may freely explore their research interests and disseminate their research results. Our community also seeks opportunities to collaborate with international colleagues and welcomes the participation of foreign researchers and students in the conduct of university research projects. As the volume of university research activities expands, the necessity to exchange technical data and ideas with foreign colleagues, both abroad and in the United States, will continue to grow. These activities must take place within the legal framework set forth by U.S. export control laws and regulations as well as university policy. 

The majority of university activities fall within exceptions to the export control laws, but it is possible that some technologies, technical data and technical services either received or created by university personnel may not be freely shared with all foreign persons, whether they are graduate students, teaching assistants, research assistants, post-doctorate scholars, visiting faculty, colleagues at meetings and symposia, contractors, subcontractors, or partners in research projects. Members of the university community are responsible for complying with export control laws and the university’s export control policies and guidelines.

The Export Compliance guidance is to provide the VU community with information/tools on complying with U.S. export control laws and regulations and VU export compliance policies. It also provides information on how to identify potential export compliance issues, and procedures for handling common export compliance matters.

The U.S. export controls laws and university export controls policies apply to all VU, faculty, staff, students, visitors and programs. This guidance provides an overview of U.S. export controls laws, information to assist with identifying export control requirements and available export control training for the Villanova community.

University Provost- Any proposed research activity, whether funded or unfunded, contractual obligation,  project, or academic collaboration or undertaking that raises export control limitations or imposes undue burden upon the institution and its mission is subject to final approval by the University Provost. The Provost draws primary support from the Associate Vice Provost for Research, the Office of Research Administration, the University Compliance Office and the Office of the General Counsel, whose responsibilities include the following:

  • Assistance in the development and establishment of export compliance policies and guidelines at the university level;
  • Provide guidance and advice on export policies and university compliance procedures;
  • Manage and coordinate any disclosures, license applications,  or provision of information to the U.S. Government; and
  • Coordinate the university’s export controls management and training plans.

Faculty/ Principal Investigator (PI)/ Staff - Faculty members, staff and students who are engaged in research activities subject to a Technology Control Plan are required to complete the CITI online export controls training course available through the Office of Research Administration.  All members of our University community who work or participate in activities or projects that may be subject to the U.S. Export Control laws are strongly encouraged to take the online export controls training. For information on the CITI export controls training visit the Export Controls Training section of this website. Individuals or departments may contact the University Compliance Office to request in person export controls education or training.

Individual Responsibility – All VU employees, faculty, staff, fellows, visiting scientists and students must abide by and act in accordance with U.S. export control laws/regulations. This is extremely important as these regulations not only apply to the university but also apply to all U.S. citizens, permanent residents and U.S. entities in the United States and abroad. To maintain compliance with these laws the VU community must be aware of these regulations, and how they affect their responsibilities at VU.

Export Control Red Flags -The following documents and forms will assist with identifying export control concerns associated with your activity/research. The Export Control Decision Tree is a resource to assist with identifying if your research/activity has any export control concerns. The Export Control Red Flags document is a summary of indicators that the U.S. Export Control laws may apply to your activity/research. The When Should I Request Assistance document highlights specific examples of when a requirement/request on your research/activity may raise export control concerns.

Restricted Parties Screening (RPS) - Villanova University must not enter into contracts, conduct business, or otherwise participate directly or indirectly, in any activities with any entity or person found on any government-issued restricted, blocked, or denied party lists (the “restricted parties list”). The University complies with all applicable legal, regulatory and contractual requirements intended to prevent it from making prohibited payments to individuals or entities, including those from sanctioned or embargoed countries. For additional information on RPS, please see the RPS section of this website.

Shipping/Carrying Materials Abroad - Any item that is sent from the United States to a foreign destination is an export. Items include commodities, software, technology, and information. The export of controlled items, information or software may require approval from the U.S. government in the form of an export license.  An export license permits controlled tangible items or software to be sent outside the U.S. or controlled information or software to be shared with foreign persons in the U.S. or abroad. Prior to carrying, shipping, or otherwise sending materials outside of the United States, it is essential that you have complied with the applicable export control and potential licensing requirements. For general questions and assistance with international shipping, contact the Office of General Counsel or the University Compliance Office.

Traveling To, or Collaborating With, International Partners - Export control regulations may affect your international trip. This includes items you bring with you, activities you take part in, the location you visit and people who may attempt to contact you while abroad. If you intend to travel/conduct research/collaborate/perform a service outside the United States you may encounter regulations and policies different than those that govern research in the U. S. Additionally, U.S. export control laws and regulations may apply to research and other activities that take place outside the U.S.  

The U.S. Treasury Department administers a number of sanctions programs, which could impact travel, carrying of items and provisioning of services to certain locations. Currently the most comprehensive sanctions programs are against Iran, N. Korea, Cuba and Sudan. If travel to any of these locations is contemplated, please contact the Office of Research Administration, the Office of General Counsel or the University Compliance Office immediately. In order to assist with determining if your anticipated travel could be restricted and require an export license, please review the International Travel Form. For general questions and assistance with international travel, please contact the Office of General Counsel or the University Compliance Office.

Traveling with University Equipment and Software - When you travel outside the U.S. any physical material or technical data in your possession is considered by U.S. regulations to have been “exported” from the U.S. to your final destination and any intermediate destinations. For this reason, it is important to understand whether there are any restrictions associated with exporting the material or data in your possession to your travel destination.

Additionally, when you travel with a laptop computer, cell phone, data storage devices and/or encrypted software you may need an export license to take that equipment with you. Under the Tools of the Trade” and BAG (Baggage) license exceptions travelers can hand-carry usual and reasonable kinds and quantities of university/personal owned equipment and software in certain instances. Please consult the Electronic Devices Checklist for additional information.

Consequences of Non-Compliance

Failing to comply with the U.S. Export Control Laws may result in substantial civil and criminal penalties to the University and the individual(s) involved, as well as administrative sanctions such as loss of federal funding or export privileges. Failing to comply may also result in appropriate disciplinary action.

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